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Thurles – Accidents Just Waiting To Grant Compensation

To be fair Templemore/Thurles Municipal District Councillors are great for ‘Calling’ for things, especially on local radio; and more especially when health and safety issues are at stake, like hedge cutting etc. However Ratepayers and those paying Property Tax in Thurles should note that their subscriptions to both worthy causes are in danger of greatly increasing, with town Councillors continuing to ignore accidents just waiting to happen.

What with dangerous footpaths and giant potholes evident everywhere, no one is looking skyward, especially while in the vicinity of Slievenamon Road, Thurles, just outside Hugh Ryan’s Funeral Home. [Note: Careful gawking if you are driving please.]

For some weeks the guts of a public street light has been precariously dangling some 30ft above the pavement/road. With even a slight breeze there is a real danger that wires attached will break off, resulting in a pedestrians head being split open or a passing car being seriously damaged.

We have contacted Thurles Gardaí and Tipp County Council (Tel: 0761 06 5000). Despite giving the Council an accurate address, they were anxious that we supply them with a ‘Pole Number’. (God Help Us, but sackings are necessary.)

What Do You Think: Maybe before the Schools reopen?
Meanwhile, Thurles.Info, some months ago, highlighted the dangers at the the Cathedral Street pedestrian level crossing, but again no mention at Council meetings.

Quote from our report dated February 1st 2018,, “One hundred and twenty yards away, in August 2017 last, a high sided truck made the careless decision to adjust the automated pedestrian crossing lights outside of Thurles Cathedral. The bulbs on this crossing used to feed motorised traffic information have been changed on two occasions since, yet the pedestrian information lights have not been realigned, leaving pedestrians unable to view the crossings signals, causing unnecessary delay to motorists. This is a busy crossing used by over 600 school children twice daily to get to and from rural school buses, not to mention the several hundred church pilgrims and local shoppers out walking each day.”

Guys you have got to write these things down with the butt of your pencil, or better still, go on local radio and highlight the issue.

UPDATE: Thurles.Info is happy to relate that as and from 5.00pm this evening an ESB technician has rectified the danger to pedestrians on the Slievenamon Road, Thurles, just outside Hugh Ryan’s Funeral Home.

Begorra,  (Latter an exclamation of surprise traditionally attributed to the Irish), I think I might run for the local Council at the next local elections. I might try to get on Tipp FM to-morrow and announce my candidacy, or sure maybe I could run for President and if unsuccessful, work my way down.

Of course the one year old problem of the Cathedral Street pedestrian crossing and the danger to school students hasn’t been fixed yet, but I am ‘Calling’  on Tipperary County Council to be proactive in fixing this also, especially while screwdrivers are still out of the toolbox.


“Listen Now Again” Josepha Madigan

The ‘Silent Spring’ Heritage Bill

Poem “Death of a Naturalist”.

[Extract courtesy of former Nobel laureate and the late great poet Mr Seamus Heaney]

“Bubbles gargled delicately, bluebottles
Wove a strong gauze of sound around the smell.
There were dragonflies, spotted butterflies,
But best of all was the warm thick slobber
Of frog-spawn that grew like clotted water
In the shade of the banks”.

Definition of a Politician: One who shakes your hand before an election and your confidence afterwards.

Fine Gael Party Vote Catcher Josepha Madigan, at the opening, this month, of the new Cultural and Heritage Centre at the Bank of Ireland, College Green, Dublin.

A dark day for Irish biodiversity

The new ‘Silent Spring’ Heritage Bill; now passed into law and which allows for the burning of vegetation in March and hedge-cutting in August under a pilot project, will now encompass the entire country; with July 5th 2018 surely one of the most despondent of days for Mother Nature.

Sole Fine Gael T.D. and Minister for Culture, Heritage & the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan together with her predecessor “Burn the Heather” Humphreys, had cited road safety concerns as the reason behind this Bill.  This need to fix the unbroken, however, was more akin to an F.G election gimmick and a hoped-for increased farming vote, rather than the remedying of any slight contradiction existing between the Road Traffic Act and the Wildlife Act.

Name me one road traffic incident, in the last five years, which involved an overgrown hedge and what has the burning of heather (not Humphreys) and gorse to do with health and safety?

Needless to say, Fianna Fáil were not going to lose out on any attempt to sway farming voters either and to their shame, supported this unnecessary Bill.

Sinn Féin opposed the Bill and Co. Kerry party member Martin Ferris associated the declining bird populations to excessive burning. However, local Sinn Féin Templemore/ Thurles Municipal District councillor Mr David Doran has gone against the views of his party, on local TippFM radio, demanding a pro-active approach by Tipperary County Council in the cutting of hedges out of season in Co. Tipperary.

Let’s be honest, what would Josepha and her sweaty constituency of Dublin/Rathdown, actually know or understand, when it comes to the burning of heather and gorse and the cutting back of rural hedge-rows. Some 32,500 Irish people had signed a petition opposing this Bill, while conservationists, environmental groups, wildlife non-governmental organisations, and smart farmers supporting biodiversity, claimed this Bill was not based on any scientific basis whatsoever.

“When gorse is out of blossom, kissing’s out of fashion”.
Rural people should ask the question, “Have I heard the cry of the Curlew in recent years?”  “No”, I hear you say! Well currently, there are only some 125 pairs of breeding Curlew’s left in Rural Ireland (None I hasten to add in Dublin / Rathdown) and there is now a real risk that Josepha’s Heritage Bill will sound the death knell for not just Curlews, but for many other species of wildlife, including our already depleted bee population, which hugely depend from February to May on Gorse yellow pea-flowers as their early food source. Currently one third of Ireland’s 98 wild bee species are under threat of extinction.

The Bill will also result in severe consequences for late-nesting birds, such as the endangered Yellowhammer, latter Red-listed (Latter being the world’s most comprehensive inventory of the global conservation status of plant and animal species here in Ireland.), due to a decline in the breeding range and population, (Incidentally have you seen one in Co. Tipperary recently?).

Interesting to note that in England the penalties that can be imposed for criminal offences in respect of a single endangered bird, a nest or an egg, under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, deservedly levies an unlimited fine, or up to six months imprisonment or both.

One wonders if Josepha, while taking on the role of priest and leading the prayers in the Church of St Therese in Mount Merrion, Dublin recently, did she recite the Apostles Creed, you know the line; “Maker of Heaven and Earth,” or perhaps come across the Dublin born Mrs Cecil F. Alexander’s hymn, “All things bright and beautiful”?

All things bright and beautiful, All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful, The Lord God made them all.
Each little flower that opens, Each little bird that sings,
He made their glowing colours, He made their tiny wings.

We agree with you Josepha, No Votes for Fine Gael here.

Just when we are about to acknowledge, both at home and globally, that our natural world is on its bare knees environmentally, this Fine Gael government, (whom thank God, we have successfully rid ourselves totally here in Co. Tipperary), has decided to weaken the very basic of conservation rules; despite the knowledge that we are incapable and incompetent in attempts to enforce current basic environmental laws, already existing.

Josepha’s legal motto, carried on her twitter account page states the Latin phrase; “Per tenebras lucem quaero”. [ Translation, “Through the darkness (or from darkness), I seek the light”]. Perhaps in Josepha’s case the legal phrase; “Qui male agit, odit lucem” might be considered more appropriate. [ Latter translated, “The one who commits evil shuns the light”.]


Thurles Administration – Their Fitness To Practise In Question

“If you do not take an interest in the affairs of your government, then you are doomed to live under the rule of fools.” [From a quote attributed to Plato (Greek philosopher).]

A third assessment examining the administration failures in Thurles by Templemore / Thurles Municipal District and Tipperary County Council.

First See Link (A) http://www.thurles.info/2018/07/02/polution-of-river-suir-continues/
Secondly See Link (B)  http://www.thurles.info/2018/07/09/st-patricks-cemetery-gates-reflect-an-image-of-thurles/

“A Question Of Fitness To Practise”
The entrance into any town in Ireland will quickly relay to the average visitor, information not just on the towns prosperity, but more importantly will indicate that this locality is a great place to live; a place to find work, with quality educational facilities; a place to visit and holiday in safety.  All of these signals observed will automatically relay to any visitor the existence of a thriving commercial and business centre.

Current signs displayed on entrance roads leading into Thurles, Co. Tipperary. Spot the 10 year old neglect.

So, let us examine 4 signs currently on view today to visitors entering Thurles, Co. Tipperary, on July 10th 2018.

Picture (1): Welcome To Thurles – Home of Erin Foods
This “Welcome To Thurles – Home of Erin Foods” sign still greets all Tipperary TD’s; Co. Council Elected Representatives and Tipperary Co Council Management as they enter our town.
The Thurles Erin Foods factory closed over 10 years ago, back in June 2008, after 46 years in production; with the loss of 140 jobs. It would have closed earlier were it not for an existing contract that Erin Foods held with the company ‘Batchelors‘ to supply goods and stock for some eight months after the initial purchase. The range of products that was then manufactured in Thurles are, now for the most part I understand, manufactured in British.

No replacement industry was ever found or put in place here in Thurles.

Picture (2): www.thurles.ie
This current sign which remains on view for the website ‘www.thurles.ie’ tells a further tale of the neglect of the town.  Someone in the Templemore/Thurles Municipal District or in Tipperary Co. Council, forgot to pay the annual €9 charge for the host name ‘Thurles.ie’. Same financial reminder would have been sent to the responsible body at least one month in advance and for several weeks after the failure to make payment.

On the March 21st 2017 the unpaid host name was again offered for sale and purchased by a Swedish casino site, Mardukas Technologies Limited, latter who then cybersquatted on the host name informing Thurles visitors that they would “Vi guidar dig till de bästa casinobonusarna” which translated means, “We will guide you to the best casino bonuses.”

Tipperary Co. Council have now regained control of the host name, since the 8th August 2017, but almost one year on in 2018, nothing has been done to put same back on line. We are not aware of how much of tax payer’s money, was wasted in any repurchase arrangements with Mardukas Technologies Limited. We are aware however that the site, together with the build and administration, originally exceeded well over €10,000.

Picture (3): Disc Parking In Operation – (“Buy discs where you see the sign P”)
Today this sign also greets visitors, however if you go looking for to buy Parking Discs where you see the sign P, expect to find details of a hefty fine stuffed behind your front windscreen wiper, when you return.

Disk Parking was introduced here in Thurles some 10 years ago. Certainly, Disc parking was in vogue in 2009, while pay-and-display parking was later introduced possibly in 2010. The Road Traffic Act of 1994: gave local authorities the power to make bye-laws governing the type of paid parking controls to be introduced in their areas. These bye-laws included, disc parking or pay-and-display parking.

Today we operate eParking, a new and improved “Park by Phone” system, introduced across Tipperary including Thurles town. The new car park here in Thurles for example is being funded using tax payer’s money.  Same will then be the subject of eParking or Pay-and-Display parking metres, to be imposed on these same tax payers who paid for its very introduction and development. One wonders who will feature in the picture as the blue ribbon is cut?.

Picture (4): North Tipperary Co. Council – “Working with the Community”.
The biggest joke and final insult to Thurles people, however must be the remaining sign shown as Picture No.4 above.

The website shown here on this sign is www.north tipperary.ie to which Google asks “Did you mean: http://www.southtipperary.ie”, latter in turn which does not exist either and suggests the Homepage of South Tipperary Dementia Project. No HTTP 301 permanent redirect code was inserted here by Tipperary Co Co Web Designers and Administrators.

Gone also is “AERTEL page 622″, with the new RTE Aertel desktop completely revamped several years ago, and without page 622.

As for a commitment to “Working with the Community”, for God’s sake give us a break. Right from the very top level of management, we need sackings here, to ensure that this situation of sheer neglect is no longer allowed to continue; after all we pay the wages.


The Michael Lowry Interview

Many of our readers who missed the recent interview between Tipp FM radio’s Mr Fran Curry and Independent TD Deputy Mr Michael Lowry last week, have asked us if we could publish the Audio File of this occasion.

Our thanks to Tipp FM radio for granting us permission to download their Mp3 recording, which can be now heard, hereunder.

The Michael Lowry Interview from George Willoughby on Vimeo.

So for the benefit of those who, due to work commitments, failed to hear the interview; especially Mgt, Ciara, Mark, Deborah, Shane, D.J., Jim, Bobby, Kieran, Louise, Mairead, Martin, and Sineád, do tune in to listen here.

Having listened to the interview above; with regards to the remarks made by Irish Solidarity’s “People Before Profit TD’s”, Ms Brid Smith (AWOL from the Labour party), and Mrs Ruth Coppinger; perhaps both the above named rather frumpy looking elected representatives, (barely existing on €93,599 plus additional salaried allowances and expenses), together with the Irish republican political party members within Sinn Féin, all might read the following very slowly and at least twice, (to ensure fullest comprehension), the words once written by Florida born Baptist pastor Dr. Adrian Pierce Rogers (1931-2005)

Dr. Adrian Rogers stated, “You cannot legislate the poor into freedom, by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for, without receiving.

The government cannot give to anybody, anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work, because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work, because somebody else is going to get what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation.

You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it.”

For the benefit of “People before Profit” TD’s and Sinn Féin, it should be noted that Garuda Ltd, currently provide a weekly wage to some twenty one company employees together with 45 sub-contractors and their current employees. In the real world this employment of skilled labour by businesses like Garuda Ltd, truly elevates people before profit.


Lowry – A Conscientious Tax Payer Who Never Intended To Evade Tax

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court

“A conscientious tax payer who had put his hand in his own pocket in order to save his company in difficult times” a quote by Mr Justice Martin Nolan, in Court No 9. Dublin Circuit Criminal Court today.

The conviction against Independent TD Mr Michael Lowry before Dublin Circuit Criminal Court today, related purely to a submission of incorrect accounts filed on behalf of Garuda Ltd, for the year 2006. The accounts were incorrect. They overstated the position in respect of corporation tax owed, by some €45,000 approximately.

This overpayment arose as a result of an earlier error in the 2002 accounts, latter which had resulted in an underpayment of Corporation Tax in a similar amount. The adjustment in the 2006 accounts was solely for the purpose of rectifying this error.  The net effect of the adjustment was that there was an underpayment of Corporation Tax to the sum of €5,541.00.

The Revenue Commissioners commenced an investigation into the Mr Lowry’s affairs and that of his company Garuda Limited in 2013. The Revenue Commissioners fully acknowledge that both Lowry and Garuda Ltd co-operated in their investigation.

Revenue also raised an assessment against Lowry in respect of alleged Income Tax due, arising from this underpayment. The assessment sought a sum of €1.1 million from Mr Lowry and his company in respect of the unpaid tax. He appealed this assessment and was successful, with the Income Tax demanded by Revenue being assessed or reduced to NIL / NOTHING TO PAY.

Notwithstanding this finding, the Revenue Commissioners continued to persist in the prosecution of Mr Lowry for submitting an incorrect ncome Tax return. The Judge would later direct the Jury to enter a finding of ‘NOT GUILTY’, to this same charge, halfway through the prosecutions case. In addition to his acquittal on a charge of filing an Incorrect Tax Return in 2002, the DPP also entered a Nolle Prosequi  or “Unwillingness to pursue” in a criminal prosecution, in relation to charges of filing incorrect accounts and incorrect information for 2002. The trial Judge went on to observe that the nature of the case against Lowry had changed, following this ruling and that the outstanding charges were far less serious than originally stated.

In imposing a fine only, on Mr Lowry personally and his Limited Company Garuda, Mr Justice Martin Nolan observed that the Revenue Commissioners were not at any financial loss as a result of these matters. He stated that Mr Lowry had no previous convictions, that he was a good employer and clearly a very good Public Representative.

Judge Nolan remarked that Michael Lowry never had the intention to evade tax and that he is a conscientious tax payer who had put his hand in his own pocket in order to save his company in difficult times”.  Judge Nolan made abundantly clear that he did not believe that either a custodial sentence or community service would be appropriate.  He fined Mr Lowry €15,000 on an incorrect Corporation Tax Return in 2006,  while his company Garuda Ltd was fined €10,000, for not keeping proper books of account.

Following the termination of this case, Mr Michael Lowry stated that he wished to express his thanks to his family, relatives, friends and staff for their continued support. He also said that he wanted to thank in particular, the people of Co. Tipperary for their steadfast loyalty and support over 22 years of turmoil.